A Hot Cup of Human Identity

Lacrima is in a bad state due to Alexis' current predicament and has been neglecting her feeding, making her fall into old and bad habits and mental states. Jiaying, Kukai and Hokuto all gather around and she makes a snack of Naota Uneme.

Date: 2017-10-23
Pose Count: 35
Lacrima 2017-10-23 01:12:06 85314
Old Habits. They die hard. Even if you manage to stop doing them for a few good months. And why they're so easily to come back when you become so utterly emotionally compromised you temporarily stop caring- as a ball of dark energy in the shape of a purple haired, purple eyed girl.

This is why she's in the Four Clover Mall's Food Court near the waning hours of the night as she's watching people from a table in front of the Darkbucks in the food court there. She has a Pumpkin Spice coffee and she has NO IDEA why she's enjoying it as much as she is.

Maybe it's the horrible dark energy infusion in it.

Regardless, she's watching people. Right now she's watching a table of two girls-- once three that is just leaving now out the door-- and waiting for it to turn into one. She saw the girls come in separately, her guess is they leave separately. Singly. As in alone. As in. Alone in the waning oncoming darkness.

She isn't trying to stare. But sometimes she is. Luckily, she's far enough way it's hard for eyes to meet easily. Not that it matters to her.

She takes another sip of the coffee. She places it back down on the table.

The napkin with crumbs suggests she had something like a pastry at one time or another.

Maybe it's time for another.
Naota Uneme 2017-10-23 01:16:21 85315
Naota isn't waiting for any girls to be alone, because that would be creepy and anyway he doesn't know if he's really into girls yet? They're cute and when he's around one it can be kinda stressful but this isn't the point is it? No, Naota is standing in line at Darkbucks because he wants hot chocolate. The weather's getting cold enough for it, after all!
Kukai Souma 2017-10-23 01:25:04 85316
Old habits do die hard. It's always hard to stop doing the things that make you comfortable, that make you happy. It's how routines, traditions, and rituals are started. And everyone has them. It's just the way things go. So when you reach a moment when you need mental reinforcement, they're where you go to relax.

So for Kukai Souma, after a short setback and a frustrating encounter yesterday with a Jewel Seed, routines are what he wants. Practice, walk through the park, coffee at the cafe. Unfortunately, he's not getting any of that right now - there's a parade in the park and the cafe is closed for personal reasons for the owners. He's got shopping to do, anyway - Halloween is coming, Christmas is coming, there's stuff he's got to get. But still, there's always coffee in the mall. And today it's in the form of Darkbucks.

Eyeing the line in front of the baristas, Kukai sighs and resigns himself into position for a wait, looking around for the moment to see what's interesting. From here he can see a pair of girls sitting at a table who've leaned in close to talk. A date? Two friends, just meeting for coffee? Sisters, cousins? Who knows.

Daichi, of course, is flying around, exploring while Kukai waits in line, because neither one of them can stand to be still for so long. This makes it much easier for him to be the first to find Lacrima. He blinks, then settles down on her table, giving her an uncertain wave. He's not quite forgotten her threatening to drain him to pieces, after all.
Hokuto Minase 2017-10-23 01:26:17 85317
Hokuto was out shopping, having stopped in at a few places to pick up some new clothing and other accoutrements. She's on her way to the bookstore when she passes the food court, and after pausing to take a whiff of the scents on hand, she shrugs. Might as well get some lunch while she's here.

She steps into line at a pizza place, acquiring a couple of slices of topping-laden pie and a soda to fill up on and maybe even ruin her dinner. (She rather hopes so. It's a family dinner tonight, which means all the climbers and graspers will be there...)
Jiaying Maki 2017-10-23 01:26:44 85318
Jiaying Maki isn't at a Darkbucks because she wants a hot drink. Mall tea tends to taste strange anyway! She had actually been shopping, the details of which are stashed away in her everpresent satchel. She doesn't say much of anything as she sits across from Norie, having been using the shopping trip to at least somewhat attempt at being subtle in keeping an eye on her friend. Wouldn't do good to backslide after all that work right?

Bag set between them, stating in a quiet tone, "You know there's better..." she sniffs, then grimaces, "Well I guess we don't have that there uness it's hidden behind all of the other overly strong smelling drinks." It's an attempt at distraction!
Lacrima 2017-10-23 01:42:50 85320
Lacrima eyes Naota get into line. Alone. This marks him as a potential target. Naota might notice the strange look that doesn't quite seem to linger but speak of some sort of weird interest. She sees Kukai Souma in line and she frowns a little at this. She wonders if she can leave subtlety now after the single remaining girl when she does leave.

Wait. Kukai. Her eyes start scanning wildly and-- oh. Oh there's Daichi. Daichi gets an eyeroll for his troubles. She doesn't make an hostile action besides that.

Those girls though. That have her intrest, The two are talking to one another. Ugh. It's like she's willing them to leave. Leave now before like-- Kunzite or Mamoru or Venus or like anyone shows up to make this harder. She eyes Hokuto. That strange purifier. She grimaces. Come on, she thinks.

Then Jiaying plops down in front of her and she almost want's to /verbalize/ 'Come on!' frustratingly. She manages to not do so.

She wrests her eyes from those two girls for a moment to look at Jiaying. "I like this." she says flatly. "Isn't that enough for you p---" oh god she almost said 'you people' like she was on some villainous tirade. "Isn't that enough for you?" she asks.
Naota Uneme 2017-10-23 01:45:24 85321
Naota hums to himself in line (the theme from the latest season of Hikari Musketeer D'artagnan-chan, naturally) as he waits to get his cocoa. What's that? Vampire staring at him? Don't be silly.
Hokuto Minase 2017-10-23 01:53:37 85322
Hokuto finally receives her tray of lunch, and slides some cash over to the poor unfortunate forced to man the counter at the pizza place. Meal acquired, she turns to look for a table, and hmms to herself as she finds it rather hard to locate one that isn't already occupied. (This is Tokyo, after all.)

So she starts edging her way through the court, head turning side to side as she looks for a seat, until she spies a set of familiar faces. A few moments later she's hovering over Lacrima and Jiaying's table, tray in hand, asking "Room for one more?"
Kukai Souma 2017-10-23 02:01:11 85324
Kukai gets up to the counter and sighs. It's always hard to bypass the corporate, soulless feeling Darkbucks has, even though the baristas seem to be forcing a good feeling. At least one of them is feeling quite happy to be at work, though, his good cheer beaming through the regular uncaring sensation most of these places have. Which is good, it helps Kukai feel better about getting a drink. Not pumpkin spice, though - cold brewed iced mocha cappuchino, sweet and chocolate and tasty.

As Kukai pays and steps away from the counter, he looks up, seeing Naota behind him, hearing the song he's humming. Recognizing neither the tune or the guy, he gives him a cheerful smile and nod as he heads over, just in time for Daichi to return and land on his shoulder.

There's a quickly whispered conversation and Kukai's head perks up, looking over at the table where Lacrima and Jiaying are sitting. Jiaying looks a little concerned, and Lacrima looks like she should have a dark storm cloud brewing over her. Jeez. Kukai looks over at the pizzeria, considering fortification before trying this, but then skips it, heading towards the table with the two magical girls. "Hey Jiaying. Hey Lacrima. How're you two doing?" He looks up at Hokuto as she walks over, then nods, trying to remember if he's met Hokuto before, his mind failing him. "I wouldn't mind either, if you have room!" He grins at Lacrima, a more cheerful and happy grin, trying to impart some joy to the bitter looking girl.
Jiaying Maki 2017-10-23 02:05:40 85325
Jiaying Maki turns her head, looking to see where Norie's looking. "Is that so?" She asks, giving her a wry look when Norie comes just shy of saying 'You people.' "I just figured you had gone for normal coffee, not whatever wierd mixture of smells that is. I was going to suggest working on Meifeng's Japanese or your Chinese." Which is, as before an attempt at distraction.

Hokuto's question gets a faint smile, "I'm okay with it. N-Lacrima?" She asks it in a neutral tone, but she is watching for the reaction.

A hand goes up, waving to Kukai. "Same answer, I don't mind. How have you two been? Three. Three been." She'll go with it that way. There's techncially three, even if she didn't immediately see the sprite normally floating around!
Lacrima 2017-10-23 02:22:07 85326
Lacrima goes up to say 'No' to Hokuto when Jiaying answers first and Jiaying gets a VERY sour look of pursed lips. She mutters, barely audible, but Jiaying can hear it. Can she or anyone understand it is the question: "Las personas estupidas, ni siquiera pueden tener un momento para alimentarse." she mutters in Spanish.

Then Kukai, as she eyes him, he gets a look. "Hello Kukai." she says a little. "How are you?" she asks. It's terse. Like more asking out of courtesy than anything. Then she looks at the table and---

Wait. The two girls where did they go!? She begins swining her head to the right a moment, looking over her shoulder and to the left as she frowns heavily, digging her nails into her hand a moment, as she does her best to calm down.

Calm. Don't go into a tirade and start blasting lighting.

She eyes Naota again.

He's the new target. Lord knows why.

But she isn't leaving tonight /hungry/ when she needs it.

"I like this coffee." she says flatly again. "Let's leave it at that." she says at Jiaying.

Then to Jiaying's suggestion. "I'm busy."
Naota Uneme 2017-10-23 02:23:53 85327
Naota finally gets his hot cocoa and sips it with some satisfaction. Hmm hmm hmm, la la la, innocent victim has no idea what's going on and certainly won't be able to defend himself from a vampire attack, tra la la. He's heading for the doors now.
Hokuto Minase 2017-10-23 02:31:29 85328
Hokuto nods her thanks to Jiaying, and sets her tray down on the table as she slides into a seat. Opposite to Lacrima, she doesn't want to upset the girl.

She doesn't understand a lick of Spanish, unfortunately.

"I hope your day is improving," she offers. "Mine isn't. I felt the need for some retail therapy." She does feel better than when she left for the mall, at least.
Kukai Souma 2017-10-23 02:43:59 85329
Kukai grins and sets his drink down, then leans over, giving Jiaying a hug, and then giving Lacrima a moment to finish looking around curiously before reaching over to give her a hug around the neck, one arm, very light, too. "Awesome, thank you."

Kukai grins and then nods to Jiaying. "Hey, if she likes something that much, she should enjoy it. I know how hard it is for her to like anything." He smiles to Hokuto and sighs. "Yeah, I was wanting a walk in the park and some other stuff, but had to come shopping. I'm Kukai by the way. Hey, guys, do you mind if I leave my coffee here? I'm hungry, and I need something to eat. There's a stall over here that sells meal plates and I'm gonna go get one. Be right back!" He makes his way away down the food court, cold mocha coffee at the table, Daichi following along.
Jiaying Maki 2017-10-23 02:52:47 85330
Jiaying Maki doesn't speak a word of Spanish beyond maybe a few very simple phrases. The undertone and attitude give her an idea. She just smiles at Norie, showing a hint of teeth in doing so. "How about that, a table full of people that can help in all kinds of neat ways."

She glances to Hokuto, a confused look on her features replacing that thin smile. "What happened?" Though the way she turns her head, she seems to be asking both the priestess and the vampire.

Kukai's hug is returned, though she says, "I didn't say she couldn't, I just mentioned she's got a lto of good coffee at home and didn't realize it was that seasonal stuff." she's not watching particularly close mind.
Lacrima 2017-10-23 03:24:03 85331
Lacrima isn't an idiot. Most certainly when certain senses are this keen. She can seen the tone of voice when Jiaying says that and all it does is give her some grimace. She knows what you're doing Jiaying and she isn't happy. She eyes Hokuto with a frown- as her eyes trace Naota's leaving-- and oh! Kukai leaves JUST at the same time.

She gets up pointedly. She doesn't bother with her coffee or cleaning up after her.

"Excuse me." she says as she begins to pointedly and hurry out after Naota as not to loose him in the mess.

She's hoping that Naota isn't too far. He isn't.

She quickens her pace. It's dark. There's not a /lot/ of people out in front of the mall sidewalk. Which means that Lacrima is able to come up fast. and nearly silently behind Naota--- and before Naota knows it---

There's a VERY powerful shove to the right. Shoveing her in an alcove in the build's architecture onto the grass there. Just enough cover. Just enough out of sight.

Then a touch, a grab to his right arm.

"Dranaje." is what's said. The drain begins. It's sapping, and energy draining. It's uncomfortable, an internal attack on someone's being. Naota's magical nature might resist it enough for him to keep conscious longer-- and maybe DO something about it if he is coherent enough to realize what's happening.

And well if Naota doesn't. No doubt the retinue inside is gonna follow her out. She has no illusions about that.
Naota Uneme 2017-10-23 03:33:03 85332
Naota yelps when he's shoved to the side. He turns around to try and see who came at him but then a wave of exhaustion passes over him. "Guh..." He's struggling to reach for something in his pocket, but he's on the verge of fainting...
Hokuto Minase 2017-10-23 03:38:37 85333
Hokuto blinks as various people suddenly run off. Was it something she said?

She sighs. And here she was about to have her lunch.

And, frankly, she doesn't know that Lacrima is off to hurt anyone. Or even that there's anyone to need help.

But the pizza is kind of meh.

At least she already sent her purchases home with one of the family drivers. Doesn't have to worry about that.

And Lacrima left her coffee behind. She's probably coming back for it, right? And Jiaying's still here.

But she knows there's definitely something off about the girl. Something dark. And she just rushed off like that...
Kukai Souma 2017-10-23 03:46:09 85334
Kukai doesn't really expect Lacrima to sort of leap up after he walks off and go hunting. It's not something she tends to do when he's around. So it's a few minutes before he looks back over, hands full of carryout plate with steamed sticky rice and mixed vegetables and teriyaki chicken and some crab rangoons. Where'd Lacrima go? Bathroom? He suddenly parses the idea that he's never seen her have to go to the bathroom. But she left her coffee behind.

Kukai pays for his plate and brings it back over to the table, looking around. "Huh. ....Where'd Lacrima go? Anyone see?"
Jiaying Maki 2017-10-23 03:56:55 85335
Jiaying Maki stands as Norie darts off. Taking her bag, the coffee and her phone, she begins to idly wander off, not warning the other two of what's up since she's not sure how the priestess would take a vampire and she doesn't really feel like getting into that mess and... warning Kukai would probably cause the same problems. She's not hiding the look of concern though. She lost sight of Norie in the process, what with the crowd and all making things more difficult.

She does catch a glimpse of the attack though and she hesitates. On the one hand, she knows Norie has to do that sort of thing or it gets worse. On the other hand, she's frayed around the edges. She counts to three in her head, then begins to walk over and holds the drink out while saying, "You overdo it and I won't be able to look the other way, you know that right?" A glance around behind her, then she tries to move to support Naota should Norie let him go, or to maybe intervene if she doesn't.
Hokuto Minase 2017-10-23 04:07:51 85336
Hokuto looks up as Jiaying takes off, but then Kukai returns, and she just sighs. Well, whatever. If it does turn out the goth-girl is up to no good, she'll deal with it later.

"I think she just had to run off to the little vampire's room," she says, honestly joking about the girl's common appearance more than any actual knowledge of her status.
Lacrima 2017-10-23 04:10:55 85337
Lacrima is draining Naota, who's making a grab for something in his pocket. But she isn't stopping. She steps up the drain a but but when Jiaying actually follows her and tells her to /watch it/ she rolls her eyes and finally rips her hand away from Naota. She probably didn't take it all. And Naota might actually still be conscious through that. She tsks.

"It's not like he's going to die." she spits out at Jiaying as she turns towards her. "I got what I need." she says. She's not even /acknowledging/ Naota though. Like he's just another mundane who'll forget this or think it was something else.

This is probably a mistake.

She eyes Jiaying as she begins to walk away back into the Food Court. She's betting Jiaying is following. "You should leave me alone for the rest of the night." she says leeringly. Like that's going to happen right now.

"When I leave here after I finish my coffee." she says with a snap.

She's walking back and sits down at the table, again, in front of her coffee. Oh. None of the others saw her leave? Well that's lovely. It meant only Jiaying did. Good. Less. Grandstanding. Maybe. Hopefully.
Naota Uneme 2017-10-23 04:29:50 85338
Naota slumps against the wall, barely able to stop himself from collapsing. "Whu..." He shakes his head and manages to stand up. He considers following after Lacrima but... no, he's so tired. "What WAS she?"
Kukai Souma 2017-10-23 04:44:08 85339
Kukai looks around, setting his food next to his drink, and makes a face. "But..." He looks at Hokuto for a second and scratches his head. "I didn't think she used the bathroom like that. Uh." He sees Jiaying, heading off up the hall and then turning off into a corner, and it doesn't take remembering doing something similar perhaps once to understand where Lacrima went. "Oh, dammit. Dammit..."

Kukai stares at the spot where Jiaying vanishes until she sees Lacrima coming back around, stalking away, holding the coffee Jiaying had been carrying, with the fox girl following her. His fist tightened around his glass bottle but for once, for now, he doesn't try to confront her about it. This is the food court. Everyone's gotta eat, even her, and maybe it'd put her in a better mood. He also has faith for Jiaying to make sure everything's ok, but... he didn't like it. This close-up reminder of her nature just put him back into a worse mood.

Finally he sits back down and looks at Hokuto. "Well.. I see her there in the distance, so... I guess she's ok." Lying to the new girl didn't sit right, but sins of omission were slightly more palatable. No reason to tell her what was going on before she needed to know. Plus he still wasn't sure she was magic or not. With a grunt Kukai speared one of his pieces of chicken and sat back, chewing on it angrily enough to take his frustration out on it.
Hokuto Minase 2017-10-23 04:45:16 85340
Chitchatting with Kukai for a little, ignorant entirely of the drama playing out not that far away at all, Hokuto finishes her lunch and heads on her way. "It was nice meeting you, Souma-san. Thanks for the conversation. I've got to be getting home, though. Have a good day."
Jiaying Maki 2017-10-23 04:48:15 85341
Jiaying Maki actually holds the coffee up as Norie stomps off. Then shrugs and continues following along quietly. Looking to Naota, she asks, "Are you going to be okay? I can help you to a seat or something." She's not sure how far gone he is, or what he can take, but also doesn't want to leave an angry vampire stomping about. There's a string of Chinese under her breath as she considers her options while waiting on Naota's response.

Helping or not, she is going to make her way towards the table once again. At least she's still got the coffee right?
Lacrima 2017-10-23 04:56:43 85342
Lacrima does sit down and there /is/ a slight demeanor change there. She's going to need more before tonight's over but the immediate need is taken care of. She eyes Kukai and Hokuto as she leaves but she doesn't follow Hokuto because she likes not being purified kthx.

She frowns at Kukai. "I feel better, yes." she says flatly. A least 'flatly' is better than 'super annoyed' sounding like before. Not that Kukai asked, but you can kinda see it on his face.

Maybe a hint of gratefulness of him not bursting out kicking electric soccer balls at her.

She looks to Jiaying and gently takes back her coffee eventually as she takes another sip.

"That's better." she says, probably in relation to both things.
Kukai Souma 2017-10-23 05:33:14 85343
Kukai waves goodbye to Hokuto Minase. "It was nice meeting you too. Take care!" He sighs and looks over at Jiaying and Lacrima as they return, rubbing his forehead. ".....well. I'd expect you to. Hey, you should be happier - I'm at least not trying to drive a soccer ball down your throat." He shrugs. "....I was hungry too, in your situation. So. I mean, I'm gonna take it that Jiaying kept whomever it was in reasonable shape, but I hope I don't hear about anybody in a coma or anything here when I leave." He eyes Lacrima for a long minute, then sighs, taking a long chug of his chilled coffee.
Jiaying Maki 2017-10-23 05:39:44 85344
Jiaying Maki sighs as the guy just kind of limps off, figuratively anyway. She takes a seat at the table again, setting the cup of coffee down for Norie. She looks to Kukai, holds a finger up and says, "That's what I was worried about." at the coma part. The rest she quietly listens for the moment. Looking back to Norie, she says surprisingly bluntly, "You're nervous and it's showing. When you're like this, I want to make sure nothing bad happens to make things worse." Or she'll try to run interference, either way.
Lacrima 2017-10-23 05:49:20 85345
Lacrima tsks. "He was awake when I left. I heard him talk. He's fine." she says flatly. "See. He left on his own. He's fine." she says flatly as she sips more of the coffee. "Ugh. I wasn't /starving mad/, you'd know if I was because I'd be a black mass of. Something. Not. Figuratively. Either." she mutters.

"So stop worrying. I'm probably going to be like this for a while." she says quietly as she eyes down into her coffee with an eye narrow. She just shakes her head.

She sighs a bit. "Sorry." she finally says in that flat tone.

"I was hunting. Then you guys came along. Not a good situation for me." she says lowly.
Kukai Souma 2017-10-23 05:57:37 85346
Kukai rubs his head and nods. "Yeah. Yeah, I know what it's like. I don't have to like it, but I'm not going to stop you. And I understand. So..." He pokes at his food a little before eyeing her. "Yeah. You aren't even sounding like your cheerful self."

Kukai nods to Jiaying and smiles to her. "I'm thankful. I missed what was going on, so..." He thinks for a second, then keeps working on his meal, even though his stomach was a little tied up."
Jiaying Maki 2017-10-23 06:02:43 85347
Jiaying Maki watches Norie with a neutral expression as she states the victim was fine. She doesn't say anything, but that easy smile is gone. "You're not that far, but I've seen you like this before and I've heard of similar instances." She points and continues, "If you notice, I didn't outright stop you even." Though she would have if it was needed. Not that she states that.

To Kukai, she shrugs, slipping her hand into her satchel to pull a few pieces of whatever she's snacking on out. "It went as well as it could I guess. He was out of it enough to not realize I was trying to help and staggered off. I don't think he collapsed."
Lacrima 2017-10-23 06:17:19 85348
Lacrima frowns. "I've been neglecting my feeding." she says flatly. She doesn't explain why. She doesn't want to talk about it. "Sorry." she says. She doesn't promise it won't happen again though.

She finishes her coffee and frowns down at it. She's quiet. She doesn't want to say anything else. She doesn't want to talk about it. If she does. Someone may come after her.

Stupid blackmail. Stupid Alexis's mom.

She bites her teeth together a little.

She doesn't know about the Pumpkin Spice plot. She isn't high enough on the totem pole. Takashi was. But she /really/ loves this coffee for some reason. She stands up to go order a new one. This only takes a moment as the line is much shorter and it doesn't take long to fill a cup as she returns relatively quick.

"This coffee is really good." she asides. "I never liked it before." she finally admits. "I don't know why...."
Kukai Souma 2017-10-23 06:33:00 85349
Kukai nods to Jiaying. "It's... I mean, at least you're with her to make sure she isn't really hurting somebody to the point they can't recover. If he wandered off, that's good, I guess." He looks over at Lacrima. "Do you think he'll remember you?"

Kukai winces and then rubs his head. "...you can't do that, even if I hate it. I hate the giant purple cloud of hate even more. So you've got to drain a little from people from time to time." He notices the teeth grinding. "Are you... worried about something? You act concerned."

Kukai eyes the coffee. "...You rarely like anything. Do you really like it? That's good, I guess."
Lacrima 2017-10-23 07:00:49 85350
Lacrima fidgets. "There's things I like, Kukai-kun." she says quietly. Kukai-kun. At least she /is/ feeling better and not lying about it. "It's just hard to express as such. You know that. You were me." she says quietly. "For a small bit."

"I can't talk about it." she says quietly. "Sorry." is all she says.

"And that's... can't. Not. Won't." she says tersely.

She gently sighs. "I need to go." she says. "Sorry." she says. Again.

Yeah she isn't feeling great as she begins to leave normally.